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Jewish Agency Opens Plenary Session; Hears Report on UJA Campaign

The plenary session of the Jewish Agency opened here today under the chairmanship of Berl Locker, Jerusalem chairman of the Agency’s executive, who welcomed the American members of the executive as well as a number of American Jewish leaders who were invited to participate in the session.

The opening session was devoted to a review on the work of the United Jewish Appeal in America presented by Dr. Joseph Schwartz, UJA executive vice-chairman. Dr. Schwartz reported that despite certain doubts, the UJA campaign will raise about seven percent more this year than last year.

Dr. Schwartz predicted that the UJA will collect about $75,000,000 this year, of which the Jewish Agency and the Malben work sponsored by the Joint Distribution Committee in Israel will receive $60,000,000. Dr. Schwartz said that all those active in the UJA campaign are interested in establishing normal relations between American Jewry and those enterprises which are jointly working for Israel.

The opening session also discussed a financial report submitted by Dr. G. Josephstal, treasurer of the Agency’s executive. Discussion on this report coincided with a statement made at a press conference today by Israel’s Finance Minister Levi Eskhol in which he revealed that Israel’s balance for 1952-53 shows a surplus of 24,000 pounds of income over expenditure.

“Vigorously we entered into the struggle for our economic independence and now we are marching forward to our economic consolidation.” Mr. Eshkol said. Summing up Israel’s balances for the five years since the establishment of the state, the Finance Minister stated that the total deficit for the above period amounts to 636,000 pounds. The deficit, he said, reached a peak of 7,000,000 pounds which, however, was covered by surplus from previous years as well as from income during the current years.

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